MONTIEL-DONAIRE: BREAKING IT DOWN “HEAD TO HEAD”
Los Angeles, CA– In 2009, the current WBO/WBC bantamweight (118 lbs) champion, Mexico’s Fernando Montiel (44-2, 34KOs) stepped in the ring against awkward and rangy puncher Alejandro Valdez (23-5-3, 17 KOs). The 5’8′ 1/2 Valdez was knocked down in the first round. However in the second, Montiel was dropped by a vicious uppercut, but the referee somehow botched the call and did not administer the mandatory 8-count. Fernando who was cut in the first round (apparently by a punch), luckily escaped a potential loss in the third when the bout was stopped when the cut was made worse by legal blows. In effect, a technical draw was rendered as the fight did not exceed four rounds and the cut was ruled to be caused by an accidental foul.
PHYSICAL ATTRIBUTES FAVOR “FILIPINO FLASH”
Based on the 5’4 Montiel’s apparent difficulty with fighters that are lanky and have a distinct height advantage, (think of his cautious spilt decision loss to the 5’7 1/2 Jhonny Gonzalez (47-7, 41 KOs) in 2006), he should have his hands full with the supremely skilled and dynamic potential Filipino superstar, by way of San Leandro CA, Nonito Donaire (24-1, 17 KOs) who he faces tonight on an HBO Boxing After Dark broadcast.
ONLY LOSS WAS TO GUY EIGHT LBS. BIGGER AT TIME
Donaire has beaten eight of his last ten foes inside the distance, and his only defeat came in a four rounder in his second fight. He’s been fed a mediocre crop of opponents since his crushing KO victory over heavily favored flyweight (112) champion at the time Vic Darchinyan (35-3-1, 27 KOs). The 5’6′ Filipino uses his height well, and possesses a ramrod jab, quick hands, elite boxing skills, and punching power. Based on these assets, Donaire has a significant edge, and the odds makers who have Donaire a 2 1/2 to 1. The Mexican has been inconsistent throughout his career, struggling with less than elite foes, most notably his war with Columbian puncher Luis Melendez (29-6-1, 22 KOs) in 2007, another fight where the Montiel struggled and received considerable damage in a winning effort. His biggest victory was last year over long reigning WBC bantamweight champion Hozumi Hasegawa (29-3, 12 KOs) in a stunning fourth round KO upset, it was a fight where he was behind on the scorecards. One positive for the Los Mochis native is that he has shown ability to come back from adversity throughout his career. However this Saturday it appears that he will face a pugilist who exceeds him in most categories.
BREAKING DOWN THE PLUSES AND MINUSES
Speed: Slight edge, especially in foot speed for Donaire.
Physical Attributes: Donaire
Technical skills: Donaire
Based on these criteria, most importantly the height advantage, and that Donaire excels at utilizing his height, expect a decisive victory for the Filipino. Due to Montiel’s advanced age (31) for a bantamweight and his somewhat questionable whiskers, expect the younger (28) Filipino to stop the Mexican somewhere around round eight, after what should be a somewhat competitive bout up to that point.
Kevin “KP” Perry